In this tale of politics and betrayal, a Secret Service agent must do everything within his power to protect the president of the United States from forces that are conspiring to destroy him.
President Thomas Walters finds himself backed into a corner by an aggressive and ambitious U.S. senator from New Jersey, Tyler Rumson, who is armed with blackmail that would ruin the head of state’s life. So Walters decides to end it all, abruptly throwing Vice President David Kendall into the highest job in the land with the added responsibility of guiding a nation that is mourning a fallen leader. As his vice president, President Kendall chooses Rumson, unaware of the senator’s major role in his predecessor’s demise. Kendall also doesn’t know that Rumson is willing to do whatever it takes to push this final obstacle to the presidency out of his way. Meanwhile, Secret Service agent Matthew Richter is tortured by what he witnessed the day Walters died and can’t stop wondering if there was anything he could have done to save him. When Rumson and a few carefully chosen allies orchestrate a disaster designed to take President Kendall down, Richter finds himself with a second chance to save the commander in chief—but it will take all of his intelligence, bravery, and fortitude to survive the dangerous road ahead. Beyer packs his debut novel with just enough information about Washington, D.C., and its various institutions’ dueling agendas to make his wild tale feel grounded in reality without being weighed down by minutiae. Richter and Kendall are both noble, likable heroes, while Rumson is a deliciously evil villain in the mold of Frank Underwood of House of Cards. There is also a diverse cast of supporting characters, including two 20-something backpackers who find themselves tangled up in the fate of the president, that should keep the reader engaged in the human side of the story even as the plot gets dangerously close to flying off the rails. Richter is set to return in a second installment.
An intense political thriller that should attract House of Cards fans waiting for the next season.